Thursday, October 25, 2012

Turn The Other Cheek

"You have heard that it was an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. But I tell you the truth do not resist and evil person. If someone strikes you of the right cheek turn to him the left one. And if someone sues you and takes your tunic let him have your cloak as well. If someone forces you to go with them one mile go with them two miles. Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you."

Matthew 5:38-42

Have any of you been in a situation where you had something hurtful happen to you?  I know I have. It's hard isn't it? It hurts and you want to hurt them back. The hard part is being able to turn the other cheek.  I find it hard myself, so if you think it's hard to do that, you're not the only one.

I’d like to share a true story with you that I got from a Ravi Zacharias podcast about a man who turned the other cheek.  It is about a Christian professor and a Muslim professor in a Muslim college.  I don't know the names of either men, so I'll just call the Christian professor Chris and the Muslim professor Aasif.  So, Aasif did not like Christians that much.  He was talking to his Muslim students at a school assembly one day about how Christianity is the most dumb religion in the world and how all Christians are hypocrites.  Well, Chris was there listening like he normally did, and he stood up and told Aasif that the things he was saying weren't true.  Aasif asked Chris join him on the stage in the front of the room and then slapped him hard across the face and said, “Turn the other cheek.”  He expected Chris to slap him back or say something, but that didn't happen.  Aasif wasn't sure what to do about Chris’s lack of response, so he quoted the Bible again and said, “'If man takes your shirt, give him your cloak as well.' Give me your pants.”  Chris stood there for a moment then turned to the audience and said, "Forgive me for what I'm about to do," and then took off his pants and handed them to Aasif.  Again, not expecting this response, Aasif just stood there for a few minutes before walking off the stage.  The next morning, when Chris was walking to his office, he found a bunch of the students lined up to apologize to him for the behavior of Aasif during the assembly and wanting to know more about Christianity.

I shared this story because I see it as an example of turning the other cheek, courage, and humility.  You might be thinking, "This is hard," "I can't do that," or maybe "I'll look weak if I do that."  Well, I need to tell you something -- life is hard and it is not all about looking strong.  It is about what you do for your Maker (God) and how you serve Him.  Turning the other cheek is hard, I’ll give you that!  It requires courage and humility as the story showed us. Turning the other cheek is something we are called to do as Christians (Matthew 5:38-42).

Another example of turning the other cheek can be found in Matthew 27 in the Bible after Jesus was betrayed and captured. The soldiers were mocking Jesus and slapping him, but he didn’t hit back or return an insult.  He just sat there and let them do it.  It may seem odd to you, but you actually get a strange satisfaction when you don’t fight back like it says in Proverbs 25:22 "In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head, and the Lord will reward you".  My advice to you is to pray and ask God to help you if you struggle in situations like this, because He can strengthen you and help you through the power of the Holy Spirit.  He will always be there for you and He will always help you, though not necessarily in the way you want or expect.

My challenge to you now is to turn the other cheek when something hurtful happens to you.  Pray daily that your life will be a testimony of God’s love and grace.  


Image by Leaping Lizard


  1. Very well written! I agree whole-heartedly. It is tough to follow through with this sort of thing, but the least we can do is try and let God bless our efforts.